LUANDA (AFP) - Ghana avoided the ignominy of becoming the first World Cup qualifiers not to make it past the Africa Cup of Nations first round thanks to a little help from a legend's son.
Missing Michael Essien and a score of first choice players the four-time champions still managed to book their place in the quarter-finals with a 1-0 win over 10-man Burkina Faso here on Tuesday.
The only goal came from French-based Andre Ayew, son of one of Africa's most decorated players, Abedi 'Pele' Ayew, three-time Africa Footballer of the Year and a member of Marseille's 1993 Champions League winning side.
Ghana's reward was a last eight date with hosts Angola at Luanda's 11 November stadium on Sunday.
Algeria, the Group A runners-up, face Group B winners Ivory Coast, with Burkina Faso down and out.
The main news off the pitch on day 10 of the competition came from Cabinda where Mali despatched a letter of protest at Monday's goalless draw between Angola and Algeria.
The shared point put those two sides through from Group A at the expense of Mali, who cried foul.
That attitude incensed the Mali team who wrote to organisers the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to make an official complaint.
"We are lodging a vehement protest against the behaviour of the Algeria and Angola teams," the Mali Football Federation president Boubacar Thiam wrote in the letter, a copy of which has been seen by AFP.
"In fact the second half of the game was a total non-match, the two sides systematically refusing to play in order to maintain the score at 0-0 which was sufficient for qualification."
He continued: "This anti-sporting behaviour is contrary to the ethics and the fair-play policy put forward by FIFA and CAF must condemn it with the utmost vigour.
"It does a disservice to African football and to the game in general. We hope that CAF will take the necessary disciplinary measures."
Thiam cited as a precedent for his protest a similar incident at the Africa Cup of Nations Youth Championships in 2001 match against Cameroon and Egypt who received no points as punishment after a scoreless draw.
There was encouraging news meanwhile from South Africa concerning the state of health of Kodjovi Obilale, the goalkeeper injured in the deadly gun attack on the Togo team bus on January 8.
His condition is stable and he is responding well to treatment," said Erin Smylie, spokeswoman for Milpark Hospital, a private facility where the 25-year-old is being treated.
Obilale was shot in the back and abdomen on January 8 when separatist guerillas in the Angolan enclave of Cabinda opened fire on Togo's convoy as they entered the country to compete in the tournament.
The team's assistant coach and its squad media officer were killed in the shooting, which prompted Togo to withdraw from the competition.
Wednesday's action comes from Benguela where World Cup qualifiers Nigeria go into their crucial game with Mozambique distracted by reports that a presidential directive has ordered the sacking of underfire coach Shuaibu Amodu.
"Amodu is still in charge of the team and he took the team's training in Lubango yesterday (Monday). He will lead the team against Mozambique on Wednesday," Nigeria Football Federation official Taiwo Ogunjobi told AFP.
Nigeria need a draw to qualify, while champions Egypt can assure top spot in the group if they come away from their meeting with Benin with a point.
|4||M. Tall||16' 66'|
|Coach: Paulo Duarte|
for C. Kaboré 60'
for H. Bamogo 72'
for Paul Koulibaly 83'
|FIFA World Cup: Brazil 0 Netherlands 3|
|Sabella remains unsure of Di Maria fitness|
|Abdennour pleased with friendly workout|
|Halilhodzic to take charge at Trabzonspor|
|Fenerbahce delighted to finally sign Diego|
|Low and Germany ready for finale|
|Lyon agree Rose deal|
|Neymar´s World Cup delights Bartomeu|
|De Laurentiis: Higuain going nowhere|
|Beckham lauds ´amazing´ Messi|
|PSG beat Videoton in seven-goal thriller|
|Horta makes Malaga switch|
|Southampton seal deal for Pelle|
|Barcelona ´convinced´ of reduction in Suarez ban|
|West Ham held by League Two Stevenage|
|Bianchi makes move to England|
|West Ham must be more clinical, says Allardyce|
|Germany experience will count - Lehmann|
|Berahino and Dorrans strike in Albion win|
|Ince settling quickly at Hull|
|Swansea in talks with Napoli over Michu|
|Dodo eyes Champions League with Inter|
|FIFA World Cup Preview: Germany v Argentina|
|Huddlestone out to hit the ground running|
|Pogba not bound for Chelsea - agent|
|Barry feeling fresh with Everton|
|Arteta plays down transfer talk|
|PSV complete De Jong deal|
|Colback excited for busy pre-season|
|Milan and Orlando in talks over Robinho|
|West Brom bring in Pocognoli|
|Maradona: Messi will define World Cup final|
|Rami seals Milan move|
|Kuyt eager to secure third place|
|Rodriguez talks up Real Madrid move|
|Bebe welcomes Benfica link|
|Koeman admits unsettled Lovren could leave|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Argentina face old foes Germany with Brazil´s party in tatters|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Messi aims to cement legacy|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Sabella on the brink of greatness|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Muller seeks to augment outstanding finals record|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Low´s hard work pays off|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: The coaches to have tasted glory|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: The five most iconic finals|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: The five most iconic finals|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Germany´s route to the final|
|FIFA World Cup Final Preview: Brazil 2014 produces moments to remember|
|SJ Earthquakes 1 DC United 2: Johnson, Silva score as Eastern Conference leaders extend advantage|
|Otamendi unfazed by price tag|
|Sam targeting top three with Schalke|
|Rodriguez out for revenge|
|Bruno Alves could leave Fenerbahce|
|Thiago Silva endured sleepless nights|
|Final on enemy soil ´special´, says Zabaleta|
|Arteta: Sanchez signing highlights Arsenal´s ambition|
|Mertesacker demands repeat performance|
|Scolari gets federation backing|
|Balotelli poses with shotgun|
|Lizarazu lauds Argentina´s craftiness|
|New deals for Moore, Schlupp|
|Litex Lovech 3 Veris 0 (3-0 agg): Bulgarians through to second round|
|Valencia loan Fede to Cordoba|
|Stoke closing in on Bojan|
|Inter still hopeful of Jovetic capture|
|Finalists dominate Golden Ball nominees|
|Celtic end Austria tour unbeaten|
|Rizzoli appointed World Cup final referee|
|Oier joins Granada|
|Escriba extends Elche agreement|
|Newcastle have agreement for Cabella, says Nicollin|
|Scolari: We have to move on|
|Roma complete Emanuelson deal|
|Alex pledges to improve Milan|
|Di Maria doing everything he can, says agent|
|Villa give Richardson a Premier League return|
|Sabella ´to step down´ after World Cup final|
|Van Gaal eyes ´unbeaten´ campaign|
|Suarez to take case to CAS|
|Germany have same spirit as in 1990, says Beckenbauer|
|´Quite clear Suarez wanted to leave´ - Liverpool fanzine|
|Southampton closing in on Pelle deal - Koeman|
|Suarez, Ronaldo, Bale and more: The Premier League talent drain|
|Augsburg capture Caiuby|
|Gerrard lauds departing Suarez|
|Andrade delighted at Benfica return|
|No Bony talks with Liverpool - Swansea|
|Lahm: Experience will be key|
|FIFA World Cup Preview: Brazil v Netherlands|
|Suarez departs Liverpool with ´heavy heart´|
|Liverpool did everything to keep Suarez - Rodgers|
|Suarez to sign for Barca|
|Boyce: Referees not told to be lenient|
|Sanchez reveals Wenger admiration|
|Flick staying secretive on Messi plans|
|Determined Dyche aims to complete more deals|
|Matri joins Genoa on loan|
|Valderrama talks up James potential|
|Aguero: Argentina are World Cup underdogs|
|Everton in talks over Traore return|
|Lambert tipped to prise open defences|
|Thauvin hails Bielsa impact at Marseille|
|Zico: Time for Scolari to go|
|Klopp eager for defensive improvement|
|Arsenal to run the rule over Fathi|
|Chamakh signs news Palace deal|
|Neville set to learn United fate|
|Fiorentina swoop for Brillante|
|Navas set to join Bayern|
|Neymar rejects agent´s anti-Scolari Twitter tirade|
|Allegri undecided on Italy job|
|Fernando idolises City team-mate Toure|
|Arteta: FA Cup will inspire Arsenal´s Premier League tilt|
|Evergrande confirm Gilardino signing|
|Howedes calls for team effort to stop Messi|
|Kuyt: Van Gaal can succeed at United|
|Argentina fined for player no-show|
|Neymar: ´I could be in a wheelchair´|
|Mascherano: I tackled doubts to block Robben|
|Zaccheroni: I leave Japan in a good spot|
|Aguero: Argentina ready to give everything|
|UEFA Europa League Review: Gothenburg leave it late, Sillamae stun Honka|